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Three Aspects to Consider When Making Injury Claims

Steve Wagner

One year has passed since the tragic school bus accident at the Lighthouse Charter School at Emerson Avenue, Indianapolis. The school bus struck a support beam on a bridge, and overturned. The accident killed the driver and a little girl, and critically injured ten other students. Many of the critically injured students have since become permanently disabled. One child, for instance, lost his left leg, and now uses a prosthetic.

In what seemed to be a bizarre turn of events, there were three separate instances of school bus crashes in Indianapolis, a day after the first anniversary of the Lighthouse Charter crash. However, only one of these accidents resulted in injuries. Four students inside an elementary school bus suffered injuries when a car crashed into their bus from the rear.

Such incidents bring up the need for parents to know the legal rights of the children as they are transported to and from school. As it is with any accident case, the victims are entitled to compensation, either for wrongful death, or for personal injuries suffered due to someone else’s negligence. However, there are many critical factors to consider:

  • It is important to fix the blame correctly. The first inclination would be to blame the driver for carelessness, but the driver may not always be at fault. Sometimes the driver of the other vehicle could be at fault, or perhaps the students distracted the driver of the school bus. In this instance, the parent of the child killed in the Lighthouse Charter bus crash is petitioning lawmakers to make seat belts compulsory in all school buses. There is evidence to prove that seat belts reduce the chance of death and critical injuries drastically.
  • It is necessary to calculate the damages precisely. The exact claim depends on the specific nature of the accident, the quantum of injuries and the provisions of Indiana’s negligence laws. Victims are entitled to recover compensation for injury related treatments, including the costs of hospitalization, the cost to visit doctors, and the cost of surgery, therapy, rehabilitation and medications. The victims may also extract compensation for long term and permanent disability. Since many cases end in settlement, it is important to factor in all possible damages upfront.

The exact award ultimately depends on the liability insurance of the school bus. A knowledge of how insurance works also helps when pressing for workable and practical claims. For more information on Indiana school buses, visit the Indiana Department of Education site.

If your children have been involved in a school bus accident, or if you or your loved ones have suffered from any injury in any form of public transport, contact Wagner Reese. We have a team of skilled and experienced Indiana school bus accident injury lawyers with a track record of successful claims.

Contact us at (888) 204-8440 for a free consultation.


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